Fish Alaska's 2017 Fishing Report
for Valdez, Alaska

Check back for updates from around the state all summer! Submit your local fishing reports here, be sure to include all pertinent information.

SILVER SALMON DERBY HEATING UP, BIG PRIZE FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 1ST

 

VALDEZ, Alaska – Last year, the top three fish in the Valdez Silver Salmon Derby were caught from shore. Jacob Marquardt of Valdez reeled in his 1st place 17.52 pound silver on September 1st in the Boat Harbor. John Neitzeke of Grand Rapids, Minnesota reeled in his 2nd place 17.26 pound silver September 1st at Allison Point. Dawn Osmonson-Sturm also reeled in her 3rd place fish at Allison Point. Osmonson-Sturm is from Waukee, Iowa and her 17.18 pound silver was reeled in August 30th.

While the run of silver salmon in Valdez was much stronger in Valdez than the past two years, small silver salmon populated the Valdez Fish Derbies leader board until recently. The current leaders in the silver derby are:

Cole Baxter of Fayetteville, GA with a 15.62 pound fish is leading the derby. Homer Huffman of Valdez with a 15.10 pound silver is currently in 2nd place overall and Randy Arndt of Wasilla is currently in 3rd place with a 14.98 pound silver salmon. First place in the Valdez Silver Salmon Derby is $15,000 cash, 2nd place is $5,000 and 3rd place is $2,000. The Valdez Silver Salmon derby ends Sunday, September 3rd at noon.

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Homer Huffman from Valdez, AK with the 2nd Place fish thus far.

 

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Randy Arndt from Wasilla, AK with the 3rd place fish thus far.

In the Valdez Halibut Derby it is still Frieda Wiley at the top of the leader board with the record 374 pound halibut she caught August 6th aboard the Dan Orion

This Friday, anglers will have a chance to win an additional $500 during Big Prize Friday. The person who buys a derby ticket and brings in the biggest silver salmon Friday, September 3rd will win $500 in cash in addition to the daily prizes. The Valdez Halibut and Silver Salmon Derbies end Sunday, September 3rd at noon. The raffle for $10,000 cash will be held that day after the close of the derby. Everyone who purchased a Valdez derby ticket will be entered in that drawing.

  

Halibut Derby – Overall Leaders

1st Frieda Wiley Valdez, AK 374.0 lbs. Aug 6 Dan Orion
2nd Tim Stadtmiller Fairbanks, AK 266.6 lbs. June 19 Dan Orion
3rd Brett Fickler Omaha, NE 197.4 lbs. Aug 18 Lena Claire

 

Halibut Derby – Weekly Winners

1st Brett Fickler Omaha, NE 197.4 lbs. Aug 18 Lena Claire
2nd Mitch Wallace Corpus Christi, TX 164.4 lbs. Aug 18 Sea Quester

 

Silver Derby – Overall Leaders

1st Cole Baxter Fayetteville, GA 15.62 lbs. July 26 Shark Tooth Charter
2nd Homer Huffman Valdez, Alaska 15.10 lbs. August 25 Off Shore
3rd Randy Arndt Wasilla, AK 14.98 lbs. August 26 Miss Esther

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Valdez Fish Derby
July 24, 2017

SILVER SALMON DERBY UNDERWAY, HALIBUT DERBY GOING STRONG

VALDEZ, Alaska – The Valdez Silver Salmon derby began Saturday and the largest fish weighed in so far is a 12.42 pound silver salmon caught by Weston Branshaw of Valdez aboard the High Mark. Amid the chaos of hundreds of kids weighing in pink salmon for the Kids Pink Salmon Derby, one young lady brought a silver salmon to the weigh-in. She did not have a derby ticket and her fish weighed in at more than 16 pounds. The young lady declined an interview, but did say she caught her big fish by Goose Island.

There are daily 1st and 2nd place prizes in the Valdez Silver Salmon Derby as well as a $15,000 first place prize. Branshaw took 1st place for opening day and Kim Keller was 2nd place for the day with a 12.04 pound silver she caught aboard the Alaskai. The fish are not yet to the narrows but are expected to make an appearance soon.

In the Valdez Halibut Derby, Tim Stadtmiller of Fairbanks is still leading the way with the 266.6 pound halibut he caught June 19th. Weekly winners were Trent Gustafson of Fairbanks with a 152.4 pound halibut and Angel Seafler of Eagle River with a 141.2 pound halibut. Halibut anglers are doing well. Charters have been able to reach the fishing grounds and have been bringing back numerous rock fish and lingcod in addition to their halibut.

Lots of Pink Salmon are being caught in Valdez. The biggest pink salmon caught in the Valdez Kids Pink Salmon Derby this past Saturday was the biggest on record for the Kids Derby since it started in 2008. Alex Plowman of Fairbanks reeled in a 10.12 pound pink salmon to win his age division and make the record books. A detailed list of Valdez Kids Pink Salmon Derby Winners, Top 10 History and Pictures can be found on the Kids Derby Page of the Valdez Fish Derbies. The pinks will be around awhile for everyone to catch, but there are also some trout fisheries that have been fun for kids. Ruth Pond and Blueberry Lake were recently stocked with catchable size rainbow trout.

Valdez Fish Derbies is now gearing up for Silver Salmon Big Prize Friday and the 2017 Valdez Women’s Silver Salmon Derby. Big Prize Friday is July 28thand the angler catching the largest silver salmon that day will win $500 in addition to the regular prizes. The Women’s Silver Salmon Derby is Saturday, August 12th with an opening event on Friday, August 11th. The theme of this year’s Women’s Derby is “Adventures on the High Seas”. Valdez Fish Derbies Women’s Derby Page on the Valdez Fish Derbies website has all the information.


Halibut Derby – Overall Leaders

1st Tim Stadtmiller Fairbanks, AK 266.6 lbs. June 19 Dan Orion
2nd Daniel Schmitz Wasilla, AK 176.6 lbs. June 12 Jamie Lynn

3rd Hali Lombardi Valdez, AK 176.4 lbs. July 11 Amanda Rose

Halibut Derby – Weekly Winners

1st Trent Gustafson Fairbanks, AK 152.4 lbs. July 17 Lena Claire
2nd Angel Seafler Eagle River, AK 141.2 lbs. July 17 Dan Orion

 

Silver Salmon Derby – Overall Leaders

1st Weston Branshaw Valdez, AK 12.42 lbs. July 22 High Mark
2nd Kim Keller Valdez, AK 12.04 lbs. July 22 Alaskai
3rd Scott Hicks Valdez, AK 11.40 July 22 Sound Affair

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Valdez Fish Derby
July 23, 2017

ALEX PLOWMAN OF FAIRBANKS SETS RECORD IN KIDS PINK SALMON DERBY

VALDEZ, Alaska – Alex Plowman said he knew the fish he caught for the Valdez Kids Pink Salmon Derby was a big one, but he had no idea it would set a record. Plowman reeled in a 10.12 pound pink salmon Saturday to win the 8 to 10 year old age division. The Valdez Kids Pink Salmon started in 2008 and the record prior to fishing Saturday was an 8.08 pound pink salmon caught by Christian Wingert of Fairbanks. After the derby closed on Saturday night Wingert dropped to 6th place in the overall standings and the top five fish ever caught in the derby were caught this year. 

 (CLICK HERE for Top 10 All Time) Plowman won a longboard skateboard as the 1st place winner in the 8 to 10 year old age division. Bryndi Beck of Valdez, Alaska took top honors in the 5 to 7 year age division with a 10.08 pound pink salmon. Andrew Hayse of Wasilla, Alaska took 1st place in the 11 to 13 age division with a 8.20 pound pink salmon and Fred Sinnok of Shishmaref, Alaska took top honors in the 14 to 16 age division with a 7.66 pound pink salmon. The first place winner in each division won a longboard skateboard courtesy of Bahama Hawks and Valdez Fish Derbies. The 2nd place winners in each division received a fishing pole from Prospector and the 3rd place winners in each division received fishing gear from Prospector. All of the winners won a free subscription to Fish Alaska Magazine.

The Valdez Kids Pink Salmon Derby is a free event open to kids age 5 to 16. The weigh-in station gave away 300 free t-shirts to kids age 5 to 16 that got a line wet and hosted a free family barbeque attended by 500 people at Dock Point picnic area.

Valdez Kids Pink Salmon Derby – 2017 Winners 

5 to 7 Age Division

1st        Bryndi Beck                            Valdez, AK                  10.08 lbs. 
2nd        Caleb Horschel                       Valdez, AK                  7.90 lbs. 
3rd        Lillia Horschel                         Valdez, AK                  7.74 lbs.


8 to 10 Age Division

1st        Alex Plowman                         Fairbanks, AK             10.12 lbs.
2nd        Ava Mitchell                           Fairbanks, AK             9.40 lbs.
3rd        Paul Eiman                             Twin Falls, ID             8.40 lbs.

 

11 to 13 Age Division

1st        Andrew Hayse                         Wasilla, AK                 8.20 lbs.
2nd        Alex Wease                             Salcha, AK                 7.68 lbs.
3rd        Dominik Bredonger                 Switzerland                 7.58 lbs.

 

14 to 16 Age Division

1st        Fred Sinnok                             Shishmaref, AK           7.66 lbs.
2nd        Alexa Jenkins                          Fairbanks, AK             7.18 lbs.
3rd        Jordan Calderara                      Fairbanks, AK             7.02 lbs.

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Valdez Fish Derbies
July 10, 2017

PINK SALMON, SILVER SALMON, LING COD
AND HALIBUT IN VALDEZ

VALDEZ, Alaska –Huge hauls of halibut, lingcod, rockfish and even silver salmon are being laid out on the docks at the Valdez Harbor. Fair weather this past week allowed anglers to get to the fishing grounds past Hinchinbrook Island and the fish seemed to be biting. According to Charter Captain Josh Hughes of the Jamie Lynn, the silver salmon are still out quite a ways out, but are a nice pick up for clients when fishing for halibut.

Tim Stadtmiller of Fairbanks is still leading the Valdez Halibut Derby with the 266.6 pound halibut he caught June 19th aboard the Dan Orion. Daniel Schmitz of Wasilla is currently in 2nd place overall with the 176.6 pounder he caught June 12th aboard the Jamie Lynn and Lupe Gonzales is holding onto 3rd place overall with the 158 pounder he caught June 20th aboard Halibut Grove.

Lingcod season opened July 1st and anglers are doing well getting their limits of lingcod and halibut. The daily limit for lingcod is two per day, two in possession. Alaska Department of Fish and Game rules say that to keep lingcod, it needs to be a minimum of 35 inches long with head attached or 28 inches with head removed.

While sport anglers are heading to the halibut grounds, the commercial charter fleet was just past the narrows seining for pink salmon. According to Valdez Fisheries Development Association, VFDA, reached 94.5 percent of their cost recovery harvest for pink salmon on Sunday. VFDA says a 400 fish sample taken at Entrance Point resulted in 33.6% female and had an average weight of 4.4 pounds. The anticipated return of pink salmon in Valdez is 18.7 million.

The Kids Pink Salmon Derby is July 22nd and the biggest pink salmon brought in during the eight year history of the event is a 8.08 pounder caught by Christian Wingert of Fairbanks last year. CLICK HERE for more information about the Kids Pink Salmon Derby. It’s a free event for kids 5 to 16 years of age and includes prizes and a free barbeque. Pink salmon fishing at has been very productive at Allison Point. Pixies, spinners and Vibrax are all good options.

The Silver Salmon Derby will start July 22nd and the Women’s Derby is Saturday, August 12th with an opening ceremony on Friday, August 11th. Valdez Fish Derbies dates, prizes, rules, winners, pictures and more can be found at www.valdezfishderbies.com.

Halibut Derby – Overall Leaders
1st Tim Stadtmiller Fairbanks, AK 266.6 lbs. June 19 Dan Orion
2nd Daniel Schmitz Wasilla, AK 176.6 lbs. June 12 Jamie Lynn
3rd Lupe Gonzales Clint, TX 158.0 lbs. June 20 Halibut Grove

Halibut Derby – Weekly Winners – July 2nd through July 8th
1st Jim Rothenbuhler Salcha, AK 130.0 lbs. July 3 Bucket List
2nd Teri Tyree North Pole, AK 114.4 lbs. July 2 Valkyrie

114.4 - Teri Tyree - North Pole AK - Valkyrie - 7-2.jpg

Teri Tyree of North Pole, AK with her 114.4 lb. catch.

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Jim Rothenbuhler of Salcha, AK with his 130 lb. catch.

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Lupe Gonzales of Clint, TX with his 158 lb. catch.

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Daniel Schmitz of Wasilla, AK with his 176.6 lb. halibut.

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Tim Stadtmiller of Faibanks, AK with his 266.6 monster halibut.

For more information on the Valdez Derbies, visit: www.valdezfishderbies.com

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Valdez Fish Derbies
June 19, 2017

VIDEO Interview with Tim Stadtmiller can be found at: https://youtu.be/XWSnSt4TUuQ

NEW LEADER TIPS THE SCALES AT 266.6 POUNDS

VALDEZ, Alaska – With just an hour left in the Halibut Hullabaloo tournament, a hefty halibut was weighed in for the Valdez Halibut derby. Tim Stadtmiller of Fairbanks, Alaska reeled in a 266.6 pound halibut Sunday, June 18th aboard the Dan Orion to win the 10 day tournament and take the lead in the regular derby. Stadtmiller wins the $1,000 cash prize and is in the running for the grand prize of $15,000 in the Valdez Halibut derby if his fish remains the largest through the end of the derby. A video interview with Stadtmiller can be found at:https://youtu.be/XWSnSt4TUuQ

Daniel Schmitz of Wasilla, who caught a 176.6 pound halibut June 12, drops to 2nd place in the overall standings but he did win the weekly 1stplace prize as the derby week ends Saturday night and Stadtmiller’s fish was caught on Sunday. Stadtmiller is now in the lead for the weekly 1stplace prize for week number five in the derby.

Last year, it was Jeff Leaverton of Madisonville, Louisiana who won the Halibut Hullabaloo and he won it with a 174.4 pound halibut. In the 2016 Valdez Halibut Derby, it was David Jamison who picked up a 253 pound halibut and the 1st place overall prize. Kim Steiger reeled in a 211 pounder in 2016 to take 2nd place and Leaverton took home 3rd place with that 174.4 pounder he caught during Halibut Hullabaloo.

According to Alaska Department of Fish and Game, halibut angling continues to be productive throughout Prince William Sound. The Lingcod season will be open July 1st and rockfish angling has been quite productive with small jigs near rocky reefs.

Pink salmon in Valdez should arrive in large numbers before the silvers and kids across the state are excited about that. While pinks can likely be caught July 4th weekend, there’s a Kids Pink Salmon Derby in Valdez Saturday, July 22nd when the fish are thick in the Port. Valdez Fisheries Development Association is estimating a return of 17.8 million pink salmon to Port Valdez this year, so there should be plenty to catch. The Kids Pink Salmon Derby is free and the first 200 kids to weigh in a fish get a free t-shirt. The top three fish in four different age divisions will win a prize. There’s a free family BBQ at the end of the Derby. More information can be found atwww.valdezfishderbies.com.


In addition to great fishing during the 4th of July, the City of Valdez will be hosting a several events around town on Tuesday, the 4th of July. A Block Party downtown will feature old fashioned kid’s games, a parade, and community barbeque.

Halibut Derby – Overall Leaders

1st           Tim Stadtmiller                  Fairbanks, AK                     266.6 lbs.             June 19                 Dan Orion

2nd          Daniel Schmitz                   Wasilla, AK                          176.6 lbs.             June 12                 Jamie Lynn

3rd           Eli Ludwig                            Fairbanks, AK                     143.4 lbs.             June 9                   Dan Orion

 

Halibut Derby – Weekly Winners – Week #4

1st           Daniel Schmitz                   Wasilla, AK                          176.6 lbs.             June 12                 Jamie Lynn

2nd          Jack Wyatt                          Wasilla, AK                          121.4 lbs.             June 12                 Dan Orion


For more information on the Valdez Derbies, visit: www.valdezfishderbies.com

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Tim Stadtmiller reeled in a 266.6 pound halibut to take the lead in the Valdez Halibut Derby and win the Halibut Hullabaloo Tournament on Sunday.

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Valdez Fish Derbies
May 31, 2017

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The Halibut Hullabaloo runs June 9th thru 18th. To start it off right, we’re giving away TWO $50 Halibut Derby Season Tickets! The only thing you need to do to enter is leave a comment on this post, and we’d love it if you share it to all your fishing buddies! The winner will also be eligible for 10 entries in our cash drawing at the end of the season. You might be the lucky winner of $10,000 even if you never put a line in the water. We will contact the winner on Thursday, June 8th so they’ll be all set. You’ll need to check in at the Weigh In Station in Valdez to claim your prize. Check www.valdezfishderbies.com for weigh-in hours and all the derby hullabaloo. Entry period ends at 2 pm on Wednesday June 7th, so enter today! 

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90 POUNDERS LEAD THE WAY IN VALDEZ HALIBUT DERBY
May 28, 2017

VALDEZ, Alaska – The Valdez Halibut Derby kicked off May 20th and some nice fish were weighed in the first few days of the derby. This past Sunday, members of the Alaska military visited Valdez and the number of boats going out for halibut dramatically increased. The boats taking out anglers Saturday did not profit Saturday and donated their time to Military Appreciation Day. The City of Valdez puts together a program where charters donate their time and Crowley Fuels generously donates the fuel for first and second year Alaska Military service members to enjoy a day of halibut fishing. The City of Valdez hosts military appreciation picnics and barbeques open to visitors and the community.

Robert Calton of Eielson AFB, Alaska reeled in a 94.8 pound halibut May 26th aboard the Dan Orion to take the lead in the Halibut Derby. Joe Kelly of JBER, Alaska is currently in 2nd place overall with a 92.2 pound halibut he caught on the Jamie Lynn last Wednesday and Shane Hofstad of JBER, Alaska is currently in 3rd place overall with a 88.4 pound halibut he caught May 24th aboard the Jaime Lynn. 

Charter Captains in Valdez are preparing for a busy season as anglers have high hopes of being the winner of the $15,000 first place prize in the Valdez Halibut Derby. A ticket costs $10 for the day or $50 for the season and must be purchased before heading out on the water. Ticket sale locations can be found at www.valdezfishderbies.com. The limit for halibut in Prince William Sound is still two per person, and one of those fish can be no longer than 29 inches in length. The derby shack located kitty corner from the Harbormasters office.

In addition to the grand prize of $15,000, 2nd place prize of $5,000 and 3rd place of $2,000 for catching the largest three fish, halibut derby anglers can also win weekly 1stand 2nd place prizes in the derby. The Halibut Hullabaloo is slated for June 10th through 19th. The angler catching the largest halibut during this period will win $1,000 in addition to the daily prizes.

This year, the Valdez Fish Derbies will also hold a drawing for $10,000 cash and everyone who purchases a ticket will be in the raffle, whether they go fishing or not. Every daily derby ticket purchased equals one raffle ticket, and each season ticket purchased equals five raffle tickets for the $10,000 drawing at the end of the season.

The Kids Pink Salmon Derby has been set for Saturday, July 22nd and will feature 1st, 2nd and 3rd place prizes in four different age divisions. The Kids derby is free and open to kid’s age 5 to 16 years of age. The Silver Salmon Derby in Valdez will again boast a $15,000 first place prize and daily prizes and runs July 22nd through September 3rd. The Annual Valdez Women’s Derby is slated for Saturday, August 12th with an opening ceremony Friday, August 11th and the closing ceremony Saturday night. 

There will be a $500 prize for the vendor and operator selling the winning derby ticket in both derbies. For more information on the Valdez Derbies, visit: www.valdezfishderbies.com

 

Halibut Derby – Overall Leaders

1st Robert Calton Eielson AFB, AK 94.8 lbs. May 26 Dan Orion

2nd Chris Forman JBER, AK 92.2 lbs. May 24 Jaime Lynn

3rd Shane Hofstad JBER, AK 88.4 lbs. May 24 Jaime Lynn

 

Halibut Derby – Weekly Leaders – Week #1

1st Robert Calton Eielson AFB, AK 94.8 lbs. May 26 Dan Orion

2nd Chris Forman JBER, AK 92.2 lbs. May 24 Jaime Lynn